Mugging Victim Offers Mugger Coat, Dinner

Crime tends to increase during recessions, both due to a lack of enforcement due to city budget cuts and desperation from those who turn to crime. But one mugging victim in New York has found his own way to fight crime: he took his mugger to dinner.

Via NPR:

He was walking toward the stairs when a teenage boy approached and pulled out a knife.

“He wants my money, so I just gave him my wallet and told him, ‘Here you go,’” [Julio] Diaz says.

As the teen began to walk away, Diaz told him, “Hey, wait a minute. You forgot something. If you’re going to be robbing people for the rest of the night, you might as well take my coat to keep you warm.”

The would-be robber looked at his would-be victim, “like what’s going on here?” Diaz says. “He asked me, ‘Why are you doing this?’”

Diaz replied: “If you’re willing to risk your freedom for a few dollars, then I guess you must really need the money. I mean, all I wanted to do was get dinner and if you really want to join me … hey, you’re more than welcome.

“You know, I just felt maybe he really needs help,” Diaz says.

They had dinner.  The teen returned the wallet.  And, in exchange for $20, Diaz got the teen’s knife.

Kindness and treating people with dignity is an unusual way to address criminals, and can only effect crime one case at a time.  But, for that teen, hopefully Diaz has made a permanent difference.

Photo credit: wikimedia commons


Rosie H.
Rosie H.6 years ago

A brave & compassionate man is Mr. Diaz. Thank you sir!

Chantelle L.
Chantelle L6 years ago


Will L.
Past Member 6 years ago


Norma V.
Norma Villarreal6 years ago

This gesture of kindness seemd to make a difference for the mugger and the victim. It empowered both. I don't know that I would have the courage and straight thinking in the moment to do likewise.

Sharon Balloch
Sharon Balloch6 years ago

thanks for these stories..helps see the world as a better place.. loved that story about the Prophet..loved that idea..thanks

Doug D.
Doug D6 years ago

A very smart person. I've seen video of shopkeepers giving bread and milk to robbers after defeating them. Humanity at its best.

Catherine Turley
Catherine Turley6 years ago

i remember reading about a tribe in africa that takes criminals, gathers around them in a circle, and tells them all of their good qualities.

Ann P.
A P6 years ago

I would have to guess the man was using his intuition to determine that this was not a true threat. I would have to assume this would not be the automatic response to the same situation with a very different mugger.

Steven J.
Steven Johnson6 years ago

In ancient Egypt a man was caught stealing food. Loss of a hand was the punishment in those days. He was brought before a prophet who asked why the man stole. The man said I have no money and I am hungry. The prophet let him go and requested the governor of the of the thief's province to come before him. The prophet said to the governor, " if this man steals again I will have your hand cut off". Our leaders are responsible for the welfare of their countrymen. Our leaders will not go hungry. Why should we? Their position was awarded to them by us. Our position can be taken away with a pink colored piece of paper. The victims in this case were both mugger and mugging victim. The fault rests with the governing body. We as a nation give away so much of it's peoples money in aide to other countries and neglect the people that our leaders were elected to serve. Charity begins at home. Who decides which home? Our leaders. To them the home can be anywhere that they feel will benefit them in their careers. Political figures need to make their agendas, OUR agendas. Greed, Corruption, Poverty, and disconnection, have become far too common place in the relationship of the voter and the elected. This is why Egypt is where it's at now. How far away are we Americans?

Stewart Easton
Stewart E6 years ago

Is it any surprise that these acts of violence happen? The real surprise here is the compassion the muggee acted with. We live in a schizophrenic society where it is our instinct to help but it is always usually suppressed or tempered by how much it is going to "cost" us.